For many households, Christmas brings with it many decorations with a tree being the primary one.
Installing the tree is often a large job, the result is generally beautiful, and capturing memories of the annual tree is worth the small amount of effort required to do so.
Help the Christmas tree photo from the start by selecting a great looking tree that fits nicely in your space.
"Great" is as seen in your eyes.
We have a tall ceiling over our tree's location and our tree height is limited to what I can haul home and make stay upright in the tree stand.
Another limitation is that the top of the tree must be reachable using only a step ladder (scaffolding is not an option) and with our space not being large in width, it is nice to have enough space to be able to walk around the tree.
The kids always want taller and the parents always want shorter.
The parents can better tolerate taller if narrower enters the equation.
With a narrow tree, height becomes easier to manage (except for the road clearance issue faced when hauling it home across the back of the SUV's Hitch Haul).
When decorating the tree, ensure that the strands of lights are all the same brand and model, or at least that all of the strands share the same bulb color and brightness.
I learned that lesson a few years back when I needed to combine multiple exposures to balance out the brightness differences of our dual-brightness tree.
Do you have windows in the frame with your tree?
If so, consider photographing during the blue hour which is really the blue minutes as there will likely be only a couple of minutes of ideal exterior brightness to balance with the indoor light levels, giving your images that extra wow factor.
Shooting through that ideal time period will ensure the perfect minute is captured.
You likely photographed a tree in the same location at the same time a year ago.
Reviewing the EXIF information from a prior year's perfect photo will provide a close estimate of the perfect time for the blue minute shot this year.
Then ensure you are set up and ready for that minute to arrive.
While reviewing images from prior years, look at the angles you captured to learn what works well and what doesn't.
Repeat and avoid those compositions as makes sense.
Also, check the camera settings used for the previous images for guidance on this year's camera settings.
Note that changing out strands of lights can change the needed settings due to differing brightness.
Often, turning off all of the lights (or at least the brighter ones) in the house, aside from the Christmas lights, will result in the ideal lighting.
If there are windows in the image, watch for reflections in those.
Block any problematic reflections (such as the numbers on the microwave display) and take advantage of positive ones (such as the Christmas lights).
For the image shared here, a couple of Post-It Notes were placed over the thermostat display.
Note that double-pane windows may create double reflections.
With only the Christmas lights providing illumination, the environment is dark.
While I like to use a wide aperture lens, I don't use a wide aperture for the Christmas tree photo.
Stopping a wide aperture lens down to f/16 or so makes each light into a little starburst and stopped down wide aperture lenses tend to produce the best stars.
The narrow aperture also makes it easy to keep the entire scene in focus.
Unless your lights are far brighter than ours, you can expect to need a long exposure at f/16.
I usually use 30 seconds and sometimes bump the ISO up modestly to keep from having to wait for even longer exposures.
Thus, a tripod is needed along with either a remote release or the self-timer used.
I don't mind if the individual lights become slightly blown (pure white), but if an extra-bright decoration is in the frame, I will sometimes exposure bracket with an additional image captures.
Long exposures raise another problem for some of us.
While most Christmas tree displays will be motionless, they may not always be perfectly so.
Unless your Christmas tree is on a concrete floor, there is likely the potential for the floor to vibrate at least slightly when walked on.
Hanging ornaments will likely be the first indicators that the floor has vibrated and if swinging, they will be blurred in 30-second exposures.
Planning this shoot for when the rest of the family is not home (or is in bed) is a good idea.
You might need to stand very still behind the camera for a couple of minutes before capturing the shot.
Think about the camera angle.
A completely level camera is often desired for interior photography such as this and adjusting the camera height and distance from the tree provides the composition desired.
For this year's tree photo, I opted to use the Canon EOS R and RF 15-35mm F2.8 L IS USM Lens.
The R's 30 MP resolution was very adequate for my needs and the RF 15-35 delivers impressive image quality.
In addition, the 15mm focal length was very attractive for this image capture — and it became even more attractive during post processing.
Despite being very careful to level the camera, I still managed to get a slightly tilted (0.6°) image.
Straightening an image requires cropping (or creating missing details) and the 15mm angle of view gave me just enough additional angle of view to make that adjustment comfortable.
Note how little barrel distortion is showing in this uncorrected image.
As soon as the perfect light was captured behind the windows, I pulled the couch and ottoman out of the way and pressed the shutter release of a second camera that was already set up, providing a completely different image.
From my family to yours, we wish you the merriest, joy-filled Christmas ever!
A larger version of this image is available on Flickr.
When first arriving at a beautiful waterfall, it usually seems obvious to frame it nicely and press the shutter release.
After getting that basic (though often important) image on the card, it is time to look for variations and these often incorporate foreground elements.
With good water flow (it was raining on this day), R. B. Ricketts Falls turns into a double falls with streams converging into the pool at the base of their falls.
The camera position utilized for this image combined the white water of twin cascades to create an X-factor.
As I've said before, one has to work hard to have a bad day at Rickets Glen State Park but conditions made this an especially great day at this awesome location.
The Breakthrough Photography circular polarizer filter was a crucial part of the kit on this day,
cutting the reflections left by the wet conditions, leaving richly saturated landscape that provided inviting photo opportunities everywhere I looked.
The Canon EOS 5Ds R and the Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L III USM Lens were the only camera and lens that came out of my
BackLight 26L on this day.
They were perfect for the needs encountered on this day.
A larger version of this image is available on Flickr.
On cold winters day, being in a warm studio is very appealing.
In this video photographer Gavin Hoey shows you how to add warmth to a small home studio shoot by making use of a warm tone wooden background, fabric flooring and and orange colored gel.
Gavin also balances the brightness of the flash with 200 battery powered Christmas lights to create a festive feeling portrait.
After the shoot Gavin takes you into Photoshop to do some fine tuning and covers non-destructive cloning to hide the fairy light battery boxes with extra LED's and adds a creative lens flare effect.
It has been confirmed that when using the RF 70-200mm F2.8 L IS USM to perform AF shooting to capture a subject at close-range with the focus distance approximately set to the Tele-end (200mm), the image may become slightly front-focused.
New firmware with improved focus accuracy is scheduled for release in the beginning of Jan. 2020, and once the preparations are completed, we will post the information on our Web site.
Note: New firmware being released at this time is for lenses equipped with firmware version 1.0.5 or earlier.
The lens firmware version can be checked in the camera’s menu.
Just because the skies are white doesn't necessarily mean that they should be kept out of the frame.
While cloud-covered white skies are sometimes welcomed, especially for the broad even light they provide, they are not usually my favorite for image backgrounds and I often avoid the inclusion of white skies in image backgrounds.
However, they can be used to create a sometimes-desirable pure white high key background.
Getting this background is not difficult.
Simply find a good subject and align it with the white sky.
Note that your camera's meter will want to make a white sky grey (especially if the subject is a white goat) so some positive exposure compensation (or a manual exposure) will likely be needed for such images.
On this day, my daughter and I were chasing mountain goats high in the Rockies and as you have already figured out, the skies were white.
The thick cloud cover meant that we could photograph the goats from any angle offered to us without concern for shadows but any sky in the photo was going to be white.
Getting into a position that allowed the entire background to be sky and allowing that background to become pure white created a nice portrait.
From the Godox Photo Equipment Co. Ltd YouTube Channel:
Volodya Voronin is an action, adventure and sports photographer, mainly focusing on extreme sports.
Sometimes he gets to dangerous places like mountains and abandoned buildings and works in some really harsh conditions.
For him, easy to use, compact flash units from Godox were a good choice for these condition.
In this episode of Godox Photography Class, he will show you how these super cool images full of action were all shoot using the Godox AD200Pro and AD600Pro.
Welcome back to 3, 2, 1…Photoshop! In this episode, Adobe Evangelist Julieanne Kost shares how to create a simple stop motion animation using Photoshop. Watch this video to learn how to make your static images come to life.
Using a new camera often brings acclimation factors and despite having used the Sony a7R IV for a couple of months prior, I was still acclimating to this camera's enormous 120MB uncompressed RAW file size.
We were staying ahead of this big old 12-point buck and it finally cooperated perfectly, walking toward us with the sun was at our backs.
While capturing images of him approaching, I was greeted by the memory card full message in the viewfinder.
I had filled a 256GB memory card just as the perfect scenario was unfolding.
While another memory card was immediately available, the pause was just long enough to miss the pinnacle of the action.
Ironically, the workshop participant shooting next to me filled his Nikon D850's 256GB card at almost the exact same second.
While we missed some images, the humor of it is realized and that memory is at least of some value.
The lesson here is to monitor card capacities closely — or buy cards with enough capacity to outlast any use given to the camera.
Fortunately I had some good pictures from this buck encounter.
When the buck was farther away, I preferred a horizontal camera orientation, keeping more of the grass field in the frame.
As the deer approached, the horizontal framing became too tight and switching to the vertical orientation shared here made complete sense for the vertically shaped subject.
The vertical vs. horizontal camera orientation is a choice we are always making.
Sometimes the choice is easy and sometimes it is not.
One consideration is how the image is going to be used and which orientation is required for that use.
If your goal is to get the image on a magazine cover, going vertical is a good choice.
Another big consideration is the aesthetics of the scene.
Some scenes look better in one of the orientations.
If the horizontal vs. vertical orientation choice does not have a straightforward answer, shoot both.
It is often easier to decide when using a computer display and keeping images shot in both orientations may be the right choice.
While the Sony a7R IV's uncompressed RAW file size has required some acclimation, it has not been hard to acclimate to this camera's 61 MP resolution.
A larger version of this image is available on Flickr.
December 16, 2019 – MELVILLE, NY – Nikon Inc. is pleased to announce the release of firmware Ver. 2.20 for the Nikon Z 7 and Z 6 full-frame mirrorless cameras.
This firmware update offers several improvements that make these cameras even more powerful, including the addition of support for the next generation memory card, CFexpress.
Additionally, Nikon has announced that beginning today, service to install RAW video output functionality will be available for those wishing to add enhanced professional video capabilities.
Support for CFexpress, the New Standard for Speed and Durability
Updating Z 7 and Z 6 firmware to Ver. 2.20 enables the use*1 of CFexpress*2 cards.
CFexpress cards are robust and reliable, and support even faster data transfer than XQD cards for a smoother and more efficient photographic workflow.
CFexpress cards use a similar form factor to XQD, eliminating the need to physically modify the camera's memory card slot.
After upgrading, users will be able to use CFexpress as well as XQD cards in their camera interchangeably.
In addition to the Z 7 and Z 6, CFexpress memory card support will be added to the Nikon D5 (XQD-Type), Nikon D850 and Nikon D500 digital SLR cameras in the future.
Initially, only limited CFexpress card types are fully supported and the number of supported cards will continue to expand as additional cards are tested and certified (Type B CFexpress cards manufactured only by Sony Corp.
Availability date for the cards may vary by market).
RAW video output function (4K UHD and Full HD)
Developed in conjunction with Atomos, this capability enables recording of RAW video, which has greater flexibility for color grading compared to other video formats.
With this upgrade, 12-bit 4K UHD or full-HD RAW video can be recorded*3 to select models of Atomos video recorders*4 connected to a Z 7 or Z 6 camera via a HDMI connector.
As RAW video is not subjected to in-camera processing, all information that is outputted from the image sensor is preserved.
This abundance of information can later be used in post-production.
The RAW video output capability upgrade can be installed at a Nikon service center and will incur a fee but will be included free of charge as part of Nikon Z 6 Filmmaker’s kit bundles.
Those customers in the United States who have already purchased a Nikon Z 6 Filmmaker’s kit (Product #13545) will be eligible to have the fee waived (proof of purchase required).
For more details about the Nikon Z 6 Filmmaker’s kit, please visit here.
For additional technical information, equipment requirements and instructions on requesting the RAW video output upgrade, please visit: www.nikonusa.com/RAWvideo.
The RAW video output upgrade is available starting today and will require installation by a Nikon Service Center.
A $199.95* fee will apply.
The information contained herein is accurate as of the date of this press release.
Specifications, equipment and release dates are subject to change without any notice or obligation on the part of the manufacturer.? Trade names mentioned in this document are trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective holders.
All Nikon products include Nikon Inc.
Images are for illustrative purposes only.
All Nikon trademarks are trademarks of Nikon Corporation.
Nikon Authorized Dealers set their own selling prices, which may vary.
Nikon is not responsible for typographical errors.
*1 Type B CFexpress cards manufactured by Sony Corp.
Operation is not guaranteed with cards from other manufacturers (as of December 2019).
*2 CFexpress is a trademark of the CompactFlash Association.
*3 With the Z 7, full-HD RAW video can be recorded using the FX-based movie format, and 4K UHD RAW video can be recorded using the DX-based movie format.
When the Z 6 is used, recording of either 4K UHD or full-HD RAW video is possible with both FX- and DX-based movie formats.
See the cameras' Technical Guide, available from the Download Center, for details on differences between Z 7 and Z 6 specifications.
Nikon Download Center (https://downloadcenter.nikonimglib.com/en/index.html) *4 The Atomos Ninja V supports Nikon RAW video output, and records videos in ProRes RAW format.
Operation is not guaranteed with recorders other than the Ninja V (as of December 2019).
RAW video output from a Nikon camera is supported by Ninja V firmware Ver.
10.2 and later.
See the Ninja V firmware download site (https://www.atomos.com/firmware/ninja-v).
*5 See our website for instructions on requesting the RAW output options activation service (www.nikonusa.com/RAWvideo).
*Pricing and availability of the service will vary by region Ninja V® and ATOMOS® are registered trademarks of ATOMOS.
Apple® is a registered trademark of Apple Inc.
Final Cut Pro® is a registered trademark of Apple Inc.
ProRes RAW® is a registered trademark of Apple Inc.
Please speak with Nikon customer service for further details.
Monopod users can put one of these on their Christmas list.
Looking for a gift your photographer friend or family member does not already have?
This unique head is just hitting the market and is a great gift option.
As usual, I plan to include visual size comparison images in the Canon RF 70-200mm F2.8 L IS USM Lens review.
Having just created the standard product images, such comparisons can now be easily created.
Since the small size is such a big deal for this lens, I thought I'd share this comparison early.
Shown in this image from left to right are the following Canon lenses:
To be more correct, it is this lens' retracted size that is dramatically smaller than all of the other lenses in its class.
All previous 70-200mm f/2.8 DSLR lenses have utilized fixed-size designs.
While the fixed lens size has some advantages, the amount of space consumed in a camera backpack or other case is not one of them.
Whether for Christmas/Hanukkah, Independence Day, Memorial Day, Labor Day, Veterans Day, MLK Day, or in this case, Thanksgiving, holiday events offer exciting opportunities for documenting family traditions, personal relationships, physical development, and all the joys togetherness brings.
This Thanksgiving, I filmed my family throughout the day, focusing much of the camera's attention on my 14 month-old daughter, Olivia Jane.
My hope is that she will enjoy watching videos such as these as she matures, with an eager fascination to see what life was like long before her long-term memory kicked in.
Of course, there's a ton of video filming options available, and while my own video kit is continuously evolving, the following items were what I used while filming that day:
Having only purchased the Canon EOS R about a month before Thanksgiving, this event was my first experience producing video with the camera. Overall, I came away impressed by the camera's performance.
The EOS R was just small enough to allow the battery grip to be used with the DJI Ronin-S Gimbal, a feature I appreciated as I didn't have to continuously watch my battery levels throughout the day.
Of course, using the battery grip increased the size/weight of the setup, but I didn't find use of the battery grip to be burdensome, especially as filming was limited to relatively short segments throughout the day.
As I don't have any RF mount lenses yet I defaulted to my favorite EF-S/EF-series lenses, the lenses I have historically utilized while filming with a gimbal –
the Canon EF-S 24mm f/2.8 STM and Canon EF 40mm f/2.8 STM.
Why use two of Canon's most inexpensive lenses for filming video?
Because 1) they're small and light, 2) can be swapped out for one another with very little need for rebalancing the gimbal, 3) their optical performance is surprisingly good, 4) the f/2.8 aperture is wide enough allow for relatively low ISO use when the shutter speed is set to 1/60 second (twice the frame rate of 30 fps), and 5) the lenses' STM AF systems do a very good job transitioning focus between subjects when the camera is set to a subject (face) tracking mode.
Note that because the full-frame camera gives me a 38.4mm full-frame equivalent angle of view while using the EF-S 24mm STM, I set the camera to crop mode while using the EF 40mm STM to provide a noticeably different angle of view.
In a previous video, I had used lavalier mics with a couple of Tascam DR-10L Micro Portable Audio Recorders and really enjoyed the results, but this larger family event necessitated the use of a different audio recording solution as I needed to record a number of people.
This need motivated my newest audio recording acquisition – the Deity Microphones V-Mic D3 Pro Shotgun Microphone.
Looking online, you'll find numerous videos hyping this microphone's performance and value; the hype is well deserved.
This is an excellent shotgun microphone, it is reasonably priced, and I'm really glad it's now part of my kit for run-and-gun applications.
So, those are the items I'm now relying on to record family videos in addition to the occasional for-hire filming request (the Tascam DR-10Ls also come in handy for the latter) and are certainly worth consideration when documenting your own family's memories.
Everyone loves lighthouses and lighthouse images, right?
After awaking to a 4-something AM alarm for three days in a row, I was finally treated to some morning sunlight at the Bass Harbor Lighthouse.
While some cloud drama would have been welcomed, the white sky created by the solid cloud cover present on the previous two mornings was not as photogenic.
When the sky is clear at sunrise/sunset, there are some expected parameters for landscape photography.
One is that the first/last light will be very warm in color and another is that pastel colors will show in earth shadow and the Belt of Venus above it low in the sky opposite the rising/setting sun.
These two parameters combine very nicely.
I don't always require myself to use a completely level camera (tilt and roll) for landscape photography but did so in this case, primarily to keep the sides of the lighthouse from leaning.
Adding to that compositional constraint was the desire to have the reflections availed by the foreground tidal pool included in the frame.
The lighthouse reflection was the primary interest and it was very tightly framed between the surrounding rocks, further limiting the camera position to within that narrow line.
With the rocks being indicative of the Maine coastline, having them close and emphasized seemed logical and led to this final camera position.
Should circular polarizer filters be used for all landscape photographs?
While CPL filters are easily my most-used filters and I very frequently use them for landscape photography, this was a time when using the effect provided by this filter was a detriment to the final look.
Cutting the reflections on the rocks and in the tidal pool created a dark, flat, lifeless look to the foreground rocks and water, detracting significantly from the result.
It didn't take long to determine which look was preferable.
Wet dark-colored rocks absorb a lot of light even without a CPL filter and two exposures were combined to ensure that details were retained in those rocks in the final image.
A larger version of this image is available on Flickr.
These two brown bears are having a heart to heart in a salmon stream in remote Katmai National Park, Alaska.
Notice the high contrast of the splashing water?
Camera AF systems also notice splashes and will often jump to focus on any bright water drops in front of a subject.
In this case, the splash was well below the focus point and not an AF issue.
Record Fourth Quarter Contributes to 24 Percent Year-Over-Year Annual Growth
SAN JOSE, Calif.--Adobe (Nasdaq:ADBE) today reported financial results for its fourth quarter and fiscal year 2019 ended Nov.
In its fourth quarter of fiscal year 2019, Adobe achieved record quarterly revenue of $2.99 billion, which represents 21 percent year-over-year growth.
In fiscal year 2019, Adobe achieved record annual revenue of $11.17 billion, which represents 24 percent year-over-year growth.
"Adobe's phenomenal performance in Q4 capped a record fiscal 2019 with revenue exceeding $11 billion,” said Shantanu Narayen, president and CEO, Adobe.
"Adobe’s vision, category leadership, continuous product innovation and large and loyal customer base position us well for 2020 and beyond."
“Adobe delivered another year of strong revenue growth and expanding profitability resulting in record earnings," said John Murphy, executive vice president and CFO, Adobe.
“We are bullish about our opportunities and our ability to continue to deliver strong top- and bottom-line growth."
Fourth Quarter Fiscal Year 2019 Financial Highlights
Adobe achieved record quarterly revenue of $2.99 billion in its fourth quarter of fiscal year 2019, which represents 21 percent year-over-year growth. Diluted earnings per share was $1.74 on a GAAP-basis, and $2.29 on a non-GAAP basis.
Digital Media segment revenue was $2.08 billion, which represents 22 percent year-over-year growth. Creative revenue grew to $1.74 billion and Document Cloud revenue was $339 million. Digital Media Annualized Recurring Revenue (“ARR”) grew to $8.40 billion exiting the quarter, a quarter-over-quarter increase of $539 million. Creative ARR grew to $7.31 billion, and Document Cloud ARR grew to $1.09 billion.
Digital Experience segment revenue was $859 million, representing 24 percent year-over-year growth.
GAAP operating income in the fourth quarter was $970 million, and non-GAAP operating income was $1.27 billion. GAAP net income was $852 million, and non-GAAP net income was $1.12 billion.
Cash flow from operations was a record $1.38 billion.
Remaining Performance Obligation was $9.82 billion, a quarter-over-quarter increase of $1.05 billion.
Adobe repurchased approximately 2.8 million shares during the quarter.
Fiscal Year 2019 Financial Highlights
Adobe achieved record annual revenue of $11.17 billion in fiscal year 2019, representing 24 percent year-over-year growth.
The company reported annual GAAP diluted earnings per share of $6.00 and non-GAAP diluted earnings per share of $7.87.
Digital Media segment revenue was $7.71 billion, with Creative and Document Cloud achieving record annual revenue of
$6.48 billion and $1.22 billion, respectively. Digital Media ARR grew by $1.69 billion during the year.
Digital Experience segment revenue was $3.21 billion, representing 31 percent year-over-year growth, and subscription bookings grew by more than 20 percent during the year.
Operating income grew 15 percent and net income grew 14 percent year-over-year on a GAAP-basis; operating income grew
23 percent and net income grew 15 percent year-over-year on a non-GAAP basis.
Adobe generated a record $4.42 billion in operating cash flow during the year.
The company repurchased 9.9 million shares during the year, returning $2.7 billion of cash to stockholders.
A reconciliation between GAAP and non-GAAP results is provided at the end of this press release and on Adobe’s website.
Adobe Provides Fiscal Year and First Quarter 2020 Financial Targets
The following table summarizes Adobe’s fiscal year 2020 targets.
Adobe fiscal year 2020 revenue
Digital Media segment revenue
~19 percent year-over-year growth
Digital Media annualized recurring revenue (ARR)
~$1.55 billion of net new ARR
Digital Experience segment revenue
~16 percent year-over-year growth
Digital Experience subscription revenue*
~18 percent year-over-year growth
Digital Experience subscription bookings**
>20 percent year-over-year growth
GAAP: ~11% | Non-GAAP: ~11%
~486 million shares
Earnings per share
GAAP: ~$7.40 | Non-GAAP: ~$9.75
* Includes revenue from SaaS, managed service, ratable term, usage based, and subscription service offerings for Digital Experience
** Includes annualized subscription value of SaaS, managed service, term and subscription service offerings under contract for Data & Insights, Content & Commerce and Customer Journey Management solutions
The following table summarizes Adobe’s first quarter fiscal year 2020 targets.
The SIGMA Corporation is pleased to announce the launch schedule of “FF Classic Prime Line” , a new series in the SIGMA CINE LENS.
FF High Speed Prime Line has been offering the highest resolving power in its class, that is compatible with 8K shooting with large format sensors, while achieving outstanding compact design.
Based on this product line, the FF Classic Prime Line incorporates more non-coated optical elements to achieve unrivaled expression.
It retains the high resolution capability that SIGMA CINE LENS is well known for, and offers a unique combination of low contrast and artistic flare/ghost in the image.
As with all other lenses from the FF High Speed Prime Line, it creates beautiful bokeh effects to improve creativity.
FF Classic Prime Line has implemented newly developed coatings on the glass elements and offers consistent T value across the lineup (14mm and 135mm at T3.2 and the rest of the lenses at T2.5).
This will greatly contribute to the effective workflow in post production.
Furthermore, it is compatible with the communication protocol of Cooke “/i Technology”, thus an ideal tool for shooting and editing with the latest technology, such as VFX.
A special coating is implemented on the front and rear elements so that the lens durability is ensured as with all other cine lenses from SIGMA.
“Classic Art Prime” is a new solution from SIGMA that is required for the most advanced technology for classical expression.
The “look” that FF Classic Prime Line can offer will enable cinematographers to explore new possibilities in movie creation.
Launch: December, 2019
Only sold as a set of 10 primes.
* From conventional cine lenses, it is not possible to apply for the Mount Conversion Service for this “FF Classic Prime Line”.
This afternoon in Acadia National Park found the 17-28 RXD along with a Sony a7R IV in a MindShift Gear BackLight 18L
on top of Bald Mountain anticipating a great light show at the end of the day.
Unfortunately, that show mostly did not happen.
The weather forecast did not hold true and as can be seen in this image, thick clouds ruled the sky.
Just when we thought there was no hope for seeing a sunset, a tiny hole appeared in the clouds and awesomeness shined through.
I dropped the tripod into the nearest location that looked compositionally promising and shot a several frame bracket, ensuring that one image had bright foreground detail captured at f/11 and the darkest of two others had a tiny bit of color remaining in the sun.
The latter two images were captured at f/22.
While f/22 results in softer image quality than f/11, it delivers a larger, better quality starburst effect and the clouds nicely hide the softness in the portion of f/22 capture used in the final image.
Note that changing the aperture changes the starburst including the orientation of the star points.
When bracketing such images, be sure that most of the images containing the starburst are captured at the same aperture to avoid an awkward appearing composite.
By the end of the first bracket capture, the warm sunlight was no longer reaching the foreground and after a second bracket at a slightly adjusted camera position, the sun was completely cloud-blocked again.
The foreground lighting was better in the first set of images and cropping those from the bottom gave me a result similar to those captured in the adjusted camera position.
I seldom use ISO settings above 100 when photographing daylight landscape but you will notice that a setting of 800 was used for this image.
Along with the heavy clouds came very strong winds and I was estimating the exposure duration that could be tolerated between gusts.
The Really Right Stuff TVC-24L Mk2 Carbon Fiber Tripod and BH-40 Ball Head
held solid and I probably could have used longer exposures — though sun time may not have permitted that.
A larger version of this image is available on Flickr.